Credit Scores: What Goes Into Them and What Affects Them

Your credit score plays an important role when financing a vehicle.  Once you’ve found the right car or truck, your credit score helps determine first if you’re qualified for an auto financing contract, and second, the finance rate associated with the credit. It’s a powerful number and according to Bankrate.com, it pays to maintain a good credit score. Bankrate says the better your credit score, the lower your finance rate.

What makes up this important number? What happens to your credit score if you make a late payment, or max out a credit card? With Bankrate.com and myFICO.com, we explore what a credit score is, how much specific changes affect a score, and what goes into a credit score. You can learn more about the five major categories that make up a credit score here.

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Which category do you think poses the greatest risk to your credit score?

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68 Comments

  1. 1
    Tim Brown

    I’m concerned that my credit score, although improving, will not allow me to finance a new car at competitive rates. Are you going to share with me what my score is currently?

    • 2
      Ally Auto

      Hi Tim, you can access your credit score by contacting a credit reporting agency, for example, Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion. You can also visit your local dealer who will be happy to walk through your financing options with you.

  2. 5
    Charlotte

    I have been with Ally bank for 6 years and never once late on a payment. I do have more than half of credit card debt and afraid that I will be turned down for a new lease if I don’t get these balances down. My income is secure with a soc. sec. income and a military pension. It’s not like I’m going to lose a job and have no income.

  3. 7
    Ralph Puglise

    I don’t think Ally will finance me my score has dropped down to around 560. I was out of work for 1 year and just started back at Jefferson Chevrolet in Detroit, MI

  4. 9
    Rebecca Thompson

    Should have realized payment history is the most important. Have been working on that very closely the last year and now have the regular income to do so.

  5. 13
    Jesse

    If you have our credit scores why can you let us know what it is? Why do we have to pay to see what our score is? It would help us to keep an eye on our credit and try to improve it.

  6. 15
    harry hopkins

    recently applied for a auto loan was told not enough income don’t know how that could be with a income of 4900 a month between the 2 of us but it was think someone screwed up been with alley a long time never late or missed a payment

    • 16
      Ally Auto

      Hi Harry, did you visit your local dealer? Please feel free to give us a call at 1-888-925-2559 to discuss your situation.

  7. 17
    William Layhe

    Ally,
    I want to thank you for this information and would love to know might Credit Score. Can I get that from you or is there a better way?
    Thank you,
    Bill Layhe

  8. 19
    Glen

    i have things on my credit report that should be long gone. how do i get them removed? i know it is hurting my score and one agency has me having a foreclosure which i have never had?? what do i do?? do you help with any of this??

    • 20
      Ally Auto

      Hi Glen, it would be best to check with a credit reporting agency. They should be able to assist you in disputing any items on your credit score.

  9. 23
    Joseph Taylor

    I think my 9.25 rate should go down by now. If not I will have to go to my bank. They have ask me to change 2 or 3 times and I think I should have done it the first time considering the percentage rate. I have paid on this car for a year and have paid almost a thousand $ I might pay it off before I die

  10. 28
    Robert Brooks

    One thing that was not mention here is hard inquiries. A year ago I re-finance my house and because I wanted the best rate possible I requested information from several banks and lenders, they in turn generated their own inquiries which had a very negative effect on my credit score. As you can see from my payment history I am a positive risk and hard inquires has no bearing on how I make my payments. Thank you.

    • 37
      Ally Auto

      Hi, is this referring to an Ally Auto financing contract? If so, please give us a call at 1-888-925-2559 to discuss.

  11. 38
    Pauline

    When my daughter was in school I gave her a credit card as a second person allowed to use the card to help with student expenses. I believe she has a large amount still on this card. My question is will this affect my credit score.

    • 39
      Ally Auto

      Hi Pauline, if your daughter is an authorized user on your credit card or a joint account holder, the account will appear on both of your credit reports. We recommend contacting a credit reporting agency to discuss this further.

  12. 42
    Kathryn K

    I have a chronic disease that will always leave me with high medical bills. Even though I pay on them most all are in collections. I’m talking over 23,000$ worth. It affects my score. What can I do, as I will never get this paid off.

    • 47
      Ally Auto

      Hi Donna, that’s a great question. Paying your bills on time could help your credit score, however, we recommend contacting a credit reporting agency to discuss this further.

  13. 50
    Lacy

    Thanks Ally, you helped make dreams reality. Now,can can an auto loan work like a home mortgage if set up on contract payments for every two weeks paying the same monthly payments?

  14. 52
    Seana

    I’ve heard that having your credit checked by one or all three main credit report companies * Equifax, Experian, or TransUnion * or other possible future companies that you may want to do business with that check your credit score, even personally, that it brings it down a few points every time. Is this true, and please don’t reply by telling me to “ask the credit reporting agency” for the answer. I have worked a life time to go from no credit to difficult times of bad credit to now having a great score. I would like to keep track of it more especially with fraud and identity theft as rampant as it is. And if it is true, why would I be in a way, penalized, for keeping it checked? Thank you for any helpful advice you can give me.

    • 53
      Ally Auto

      Hi Seana – you’re smart for wanting to monitor your credit score closely. In addition to reaching out to a credit reporting agency, you can find helpful information at other reputable sources such as USA.gov. We always recommend going to the source for the best advice!

  15. 54
    James Calvert

    I have been improving my credit score over the last several years a couple years ago I financed though a SHADY company called Santander Consumer at a rate of 22% paid off the car and financed almost $26,000 loan I bought the car for $21,000; that was with a co signer even and with no mess ups and paying off debit! Now ally gave me a loan in Oct for almost 17% not so bad with no ones help but they won’t give me a checking or savings account… This is crazy I would really like someone from ally to send me an email who can contact me and maybe get me a savings and checking account. I also find it odd the you need 2 different log ins when both are ally products. I was told it has to do in 2008 they starting banking not just auto. But both systems should talk to each other!

    • 55
      Ally Auto

      Hi James, thanks for being a customer! We appreciate your feedback and will share it with our team as well as our partners at Ally Bank. If you’d like someone from Ally Bank to reach out to you regarding a checkings or savings account, please email your phone # to allycommunity@ally.com.

  16. 56
    maddie

    Does Ally do pre financing for new car loans? Does it help that my current auto loan is through Ally and I’ve not missed a payment? I did have a BK about a year ago but been working to rebuild. I kept my loan (lease) through the BK and was able to hold on. Now I’m back to work and making good $$$.

    • 57
      Ally Auto

      Hi Maddie, first of all thank you for being a customer! We have an online pre-approval application that can be used for GM or Chrysler vehicles, which you can find here: http://bit.ly/1dSahrQ. If you’re looking at a non GM or Chrysler vehicle, please visit your local dealer. Let us know if you have any questions, we’re happy to help!

    • 59
      Ally Auto

      Hi Ariel, thanks for being a customer! Please visit your local dealership, once you’ve found your next car, you can apply through the dealership to see if you qualify for financing with Ally. Let us know if you have any questions, we’re happy to help!

  17. 60
    harry hopkins

    went to a dealer in Cheboygan to buy a used vehicle after being with ally for quite some time and my wife and I having a income of almost 5,000 a month and not the best credit score were turned down for a loan from ally never been late and always pay on time with this bank was told not enough income on a 45,000 vehicle that had a book of 49,000 surprised yes we are

    • 61
      Ally Auto

      Hi Harry, we appreciate you being a long-time Ally customer. We recommend reaching out to the dealer you worked with for more information on this.

  18. 62
    harry hopkins

    we already done this he said ally said no that was it said it was because of our credit score well I ask him did they see that we have never missed a payment or been late he said don’t know out of my hands wish you had a number that a customer could call and talk to someone on why they got turned down after being a long time customer should take that into consideration

  19. 64
    Jack

    I purchased a new Dodge truck (2013). My interest was high I have established a payment history at this time with Ally. Is there any way I could reduce my interest on the loan. I have had other financing companies asking to reduce the loan payments. I have had a good relationship with Ally and would prefer to stay with them. please provide information concerning this.

  20. 66
    Lisa

    I had an outstanding credit score of over 700. I bought a new vehicle with an interest rate of 6%, which I thought was pretty high. The dealership didn’t disclose this to me until I was ready to sign the paperwork. Needless to say, I have since refinanced the car with my bank under a much lower interest rate. I will think long and hard before I finance a car through Ally again. Thanks but no thanks.

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